With Halloween just around the corner, local Fort Wayne celebrities are offering their tips for spooky Halloween fun. We caught up with some on-air personalities to get their take on the holiday.
Charly Butcher, host of Ft. Wayne’s Morning News on Newstalk 1190 WOWO says his favorite part of Halloween is handing out candy to trick-or-treaters. Though he enjoys seeing the kids in their costumes, the best Halloween costume he’s seen in years was at a local nightclub. One patron wore an Oscar the Grouch costume, trashcan and all: “He could sit down and put the lid on it. He was on the dance floor, so it just looked like there was this big can on the dance floor, and he popped out of the can as Oscar the Grouch and scared everybody.”
Aside from handing out the candy, his favorite part of Halloween is carving pumpkins with his kids. Charly’s known as a master pumpkin carver around the Butcher house. The secret to his pumpkins is using templates and lots of patience. If you love carving pumpkins too, check out these tips for protecting your jack o’lantern from mold and dehydration.
For the ultimate Halloween decorations, Charly suggests lots of spider webs and strobe lights. He suggests, “You can do pretty cool things with multiple strobes. One looks lame; three looks awesome if you set them up right. You want to use them against the wall so it lights up off-angle to indirectly light the cobwebs and stuff.” He also suggests using fog machines or dry ice to create a bubbling cauldron: “a smoke machine inside of a cauldron looks like it’s bubbling out. One of those mini-smoke machines is perfect for that.”
Down the hall in the K105 studio, morning host Dude Walker‘s favorite part of Halloween is “scaring the crap out of people at the station.” He enjoys playing “fun natured” pranks, like waiting for people to come into their offices and jumping out to scare them or wearing masks.
At home he loves to take his kids trick-or-treating and seeing the kids Halloween costumes. His favorite costume recently was “a kid that was dressed up as a UPS man and he was pulling a make-shift doll and his little brother was dressed up as a package.” Sometimes, however, the grown-ups aren’t as cute. Dude notes, “We go to the adult parties and there’s usually people with borderline offensive costumes…There’s always somebody who takes it to the nth degree.”
If Dude could host the ultimate Halloween party, he says it would have a Fear Factor theme featuring “gross food, nasty food, brains. And lots of beer.”
Jim Shovlin, announcer for the Ft. Wayne Tin Caps and many local high school sports, grew up in Fort Wayne and has fond memories of trick-or-treating two nights in a row. He and his group would visit the houses on October 30th and then change masks and go again on October 31st, earning twice the candy. I guess that’s trick and treat. As a parent, he also enjoyed trick-or-treating and now, as a grandfather of three, he’s looking forward to seeing the kids’ costumes. “When they text me those pictures I’ll get a little teary-eyed because they’ll look so cute.” His two year-old grandson “thinks he’s a Ninja Turtle,” Shovlin says. “He’d wear [that costume] every day if he could. With little kids they really get into it and put everything they’ve got into the costume.”
Like Charly, Shovlin also enjoys carving pumpkins and seeing the unique designs people come up with. He also thinks of the jack o’lantern as a bit of a personality test: “You can tell a little about a person’s personality based on the pumpkin they carve. If it’s a smiley face you can tell that person is a little bubbly. If they carved a mean face you kind of wonder about that person or maybe they had a bad day when they carved it.”
For his ultimate Halloween party, Shovlin would host the event in an old mansion and “No one would be admitted without a cool, cool costume.” The event would feature spooky decorations such as coffins smoking with dry ice, skeletons, and plenty of spiderwebs, “the usual ghouls and goblins of Halloween…the Addams Family would probably be in attendance.” For his party, there’d also be classic Halloween activities, such as bobbing for apples. He asserts, “If you’re going to have a Halloween party, you really should go all out and get into the spirit.”
Finally, Shovlin notes the holiday spirit that comes along with Halloween, especially when people get involved with decorating their homes: “I really like that it’s not just Christmas that you see people putting decorations out for. With Halloween there’s the black and orange and I think those are traditions in this country that should be kept special.”
You can create your ultimate Halloween party like Charly, Dude, and Jim using ShindigZ Halloween decorations and kits. Create an old mansion setting using one of our Haunted House Kits or the crypt silhouette. Accent the yard in front of your house with personalized tombstones with funny or creepy names on them. Our zombie standees add an extra-spooky touch that’s perfectly on trend. Finish the look off with a smoke machine to create billowing Halloween fog.
On the inside of the party, set your tables with creepy Halloween tableware. And add our creepy cuts in a selection of eyeballs, limbs, or fingers to the buffet table for a gross-out factor like at Dude’s Fear Factor party. Creating creepy food that isn’t quite as wild as Fear Factor can be a fun activity for adults or kids. You can make white chocolate eyeballs with pretzels and M-n-M’s as the pupil. A brain mold and pink Jell-O mix makes for a creepy edible focal point on your dessert table.
Set up wall decor or standees of creepy characters or add some cob webs around the room to add to the haunted mansion feel. Add strobe lights to your party space to create an unnerving ambiance. Remember, like Charly suggests, set the strobes along the wall so they light decorations at an angle and create an effect of seeing spooky sights out of the corner of your eye. Don’t forget Halloween costumes for your family! If cool costumes are a must-have for your guests, you’ll want to have an awesome alter-ego as well.
Halloween is just three-weeks away and Ft. Wayne is decked out in autumn leaves and spooky decor. What are your favorite Halloween traditions or party decorating ideas? Sound off in the comments!